Annual Meeting Features 4% Friday groups

Our Board’s Annual Meeting is coming up soon!

Wednesday May 9th at 6:30pm in Co-op Room 309 – with snacks!

The meeting will feature guest representatives from 4% Friday Recipient Groups, and well as a financial picture of the last year at the Co-op, information on our first year of Patronage Refunds, and updates on our long term vision planning.

Hope you can make it –

Rebecca Mallett: The La Leche League of Skagit County is a non-profit organization whose purpose is to help mothers to breastfeed through mother-to-mother support, encouragement, information, and education. We aim to promote a better understanding of breastfeeding as an important element in the healthy development of the baby and mother.

Teresa Vaughn: The Lincoln Elementary Healthy School Project provides the students and families of Lincoln with opportunities for increased physical activity and access to improved nutrition. They have put together the Lincoln School Garden and Family Cooking Classes, the Lincoln School Composting and Worm Bin project, Lincoln Family Breakfasts, after school dance classes and farm field trips.

Frieda Fuhrman and kids from class: West View K-8 in Burlington is a Two-Way Spanish/English Immersion (TWI) public school. They are dedicated to raising the achievement of all students, regardless of race or language, while promoting bilingualism for all Burlington-Edison students, staff, and community members. Their  Skagit Co-op 4% support will fund a Healthy Food course for middle schoolers.

Sarita Schaffer: Viva Farms helps people start up or revitalize farms by providing Sustainable Whole Farm Planning courses, Farm Business Planning courses, workshops and technical assistance (in partnership with WSU Extension); access to land; access to equipment and infrastructure; access to capital and support with marketing, sales and distribution. Viva Farms primarily serves beginning farmers and farm workers who want to become farm owners.

Lynn Christofferson: The Circles Initiative is aimed at helping those in poverty build financial stability and
independence. Circles brings low-income individuals who want to escape poverty (Leaders) into
a relationship with middle and upper income volunteers who want to work with them (Allies) on
their financial goals. With carefully selected training which includes elements of both financial
education and workforce development, low-income individuals and their families are better able
to understand and work through the elements and challenges that must be addressed if they are
to become economically self-sufficient.


Patronage Dividends

All right, it’s the New Year, and we’ve been getting lots of calls already asking: What’s going on with patronage?

Thanks for your interest, and here’s more information:

First, our Finance department has to get our year-end books in order, so the Board will have the necessary information to determine whether we did well enough in 2010 to declare patronage refunds. The next Board Meeting is in March, the earliest the Board can make that determination.

Next, we’ve got to wind our way through our first patronage year – we’ve never done this before, so we’re anticipating that refunds in the form of store credit will be available in the summertime. And you’ll be able to request that we send you a check if need be. Then, you’ll have 90 days to claim your patronage refund.

So, if you’ve spent a few hundred bucks as owner here during the last year, you’ll probably be hearing from us. Those of you who are REI members are familiar with this system, but remember, while it’s not going to feel like you’re getting the Big Bucks back, it is a great return on your equity investment in good food. Please visit our Patronage page on our website for more details.

Please do claim and use your patronage refund  – it’s better financially for your Co-op and helps us to continue to build equity -if you don’t use it, then all the earnings from your purchases are taxed.

Thanks to all of you for your help in establishing patronage – we’ve wanted to do this for a while and so far it’s been a smooth process. We so appreciate your continued interest and investment in our Co-op! You’ll be hearing from us in more detail this summer.